what to do when the going (at work) gets tough

I've been wanting to write about this since I listened to the episode 'What to do When You Hate Your Job" by Michael Hyatt's This is My Life podcast.

No, I don't hate my job. Hate is too strong a word. But admittedly, there are times I find it hard and overwhelming. And during those times, it is easy to get swayed emotionally and it becomes difficult to put things in perspective. In short, I react and feel like a victim who has no control of my circumstances instead of taking a step back and acting consciously. I know, I know, choosing to be proactive rather than reactive will make all the difference. However at the heat of the moment, it is not easy to make the good choice.

“If you’re proactive, you don’t have to wait for circumstances or other people to create perspective expanding experiences. You can consciously create your own."
- Stephen Covey

It takes a lot of practice and conscious efforts before one can be truly proactive. Makes me think I should have joined the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People seminar a second time. It has been 7 years since I had my first one. This post is a reminder for me to be the captain of my ship!

For proactive takeaways, you may want to read Lifehack's Are you Reactive or Proactive? article here.

Going back to Michael Hyatt's podcast, what I learned is to accept that work is hard. That's why it is called work and not play. Accept the bad with the good. There is no such thing as an easy job. Even celebrities have to battle against sleepless nights, stress and burnout. That's why some of them turn to drugs!

I should also be thankful that I am employed, that I have money to buy my needs and some wants, too.

What I love about my job is that I continue to grow not only professionally but as a person. There's something about regularly dealing with a number of staff and clients, conflicting deadlines and time pressure that helps build character - patience, kindness and resilience, among them.

I also realized that I have a big role to play in the job satisfaction of the people I handle just as my boss has a big role in mine. So I should continuously strive to be a better manager, too. One source of satisfaction in my job is the fact that I am partly responsible for the career development and growth of my staff. Their success is my success, their failure my failure. I am only as good as my worst performing staff.

This article from mashable has some tips on how to be a good manager.

One thing that I'm currently addressing is the source of my dissatisfaction. It is important to identify what keeps you unhappy in your job so that you can address it, if it has a solution. If none, then you may consider a graceful exit. After all, life is too short!

Most times, I feel overwhelmed by the volume of work, issues and backlogs. And to minimize my anxiety, I try to do as much work as I can in a day to the point of spreading myself too thin. I work hard but not smart.

I can change this by thinking of long-term and not band-aid solutions to our current issues. Sometimes, it is easier to do things on my own rather than coach someone to do the stuff. I need to invest more time in teaching and empowering so that we can think of better ways of doing things.

Bottomline: Stress is a part of life but I always have a choice on how to deal with it.

"You can't stop the waves,
but you can learn to surf."

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPho


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